I Workshop: Microalgae production technologies and applications to marine fish aquaculture

El Puerto de Santa María (Spain), 20-24 June 2016.

Jose P. Cañavate

IFAPA Centro El Toruño. Junta de Andalucía. Spain

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“The trophic value of phytoplankton”

The concept of phytoplankton trophic value is central to understand how these primary producers can fuel food webs or can be used to efficiently support different kinds of aquaculture practices. The high plasticity of phytoplankton elemental and biochemical composition is a consequence of their low homeostatic capacity against external factors, with nutrients playing a fundamental role.

Elements can also determine de extent of variation of important biochemicals in microalgae that will affect the food web. Trophic transfer dynamics will vary greatly between the extremes of feeding on high-quantity/low quality phytoplankton versus low-quantity/high-quality.

The ratio C/N/P is a known indicator of phytoplankton food quality and must be optimal so as to avoid excess C and therefore excess respiration. The more N and P rich the phytoplankton, the less energy is expended to respire C and obtain the inorganic nutrients in food (growth rate hypothesis). Trophic value of phytoplankton also depends on taxonomy, with Chromalveolate secondary endosymbionts being in a higher level than primary endosymbionts from the green lineage.

Cyanobacteria are at the lowest level due to their lacking in sterols, which are key connectivity nutrients for primary consumers. Proteins from phytoplankton show balanced amino acid profiles with only methionine below standard values for reference materials. An interesting feature from phytoplankton proteins is their low amino acid profile variability due to either taxonomy or external factors influence. Lipids from phytoplankton are, on the other hand, highly variable and are highly influenced by both taxonomy and external conditions. Most essential fatty acids are synthetized by phytoplankton and travel the food web up to top consumers.

M.G. Claros

Dpto Biología Molecular y Bioquímica & Plataforma Andaluza de BIoinformática. Universidad de Málaga, Spain

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"Bioinformatic platforms for the study of marine organisms"

One of the goals of our research team is to provide bioinformatics tools for non-model species, such as olive tree, pine, small pea, faba bean or pig. Concerning marine organisms we have developed databases for SNPs of Mytilus edulis and Crassostrea angulata.

We have also developed the SoleaDB database for the transcriptomes of Solea senegalensis and Solea solea (www.juntadeandalucia.es/agriculturaypesca/ifapa/soleadb_ifapa/).

We have developed Ruditapes-DB for the transcriptome of Ruditapes decussatus (http://www.scbi.uma.es/ruditapesdb/), and a database for the transcriptome of the microalga Tisochrysis lutea (http://www.scbi.uma.es/isochrysisdb/).

Genomic databases were developed for the pathogen Photobacterium damseale (http://www.scbi.uma.es/photobacterium_damselae/) and the current draft genome of Senegalese sole (http://www.scbi.uma.es/GenoSole/).

Rosa León

University of Huelva

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"Transgenic Microalgae as Platforms for the Production of Foreing Proteins and Valuable Compounds"

Despite the variety of products that can be obtained from microalgae, the price of microalgae culture, harvesting and processing is still too high and this makes that the number of microalgal products commercially available with a competitive price is usually limited to compounds for pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, cosmetic industries, which usually have high price.

 

All this has made to increase the attention on genetic engineering of microalgae, as a potential tool to aim the economically feasible production of bulk materials and to enhance the productivity of the high-added value ones.

 

In collaboration with the company PhycoGenetics we designed a new expression plasmid for microalgae. Using this plasmid we have: Expressed simultaneously several genes to engineer the carotenoid metabolic pathway in microalgae; expressed antimicrobial peptides to obtain functional phytoplankton able to enforce the immune system of the species that take it; manipulated carbon assimilation pathway in microalgae to obtain transgenic lines with higher growth rate and higher content in neutral lipids; and we are developing microalgae as a platforms to express and deliver oral vaccines in aquaculture.

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João CR Cardoso

Comparative Molecular and Integrative Biology, Center of Marine Sciences, University of Algarve, Faro, Portugal

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"Screening for bioactivity: what can stable cell lines expressing fish genes tell us?"

Cell-based bioassays are currently used to identify novel bioactive compounds and the G-Protein Couple Receptor (GPCRs) members are important molecular targets to screen for bioactivity.

 

In this presentation examples of the in vitro technologies implemented at CCMAR using GPCRs will be shown. The importance and contribution of the fish genes as an important proxy to understand the role of GPCR or other genes in the vertebrate physiology is highlighted.

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Carlos Infante

Fitoplancton Marino S.L.

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"Usefulness of molecular tools for a quality control of production"

Application of molecular tools to control productivity of selective compounds in microalgae is an approach with a huge potential.

 

Microalgae represent a phylogenetically diverse group of single-celled and photosynthetic prokaryotic and eukaryotic microorganisms. This great variability can become a handicap in order to develop molecular tools for a particular species.

 

Nevertheless, new sequencing technologies are contributing to increase day by day our knowledge regarding even complete genomes. Compounds with commercial interest such as pigments, omega-3 fatty acids or TAG can be produced by microalgae in high quantities under certain culture conditions, and that can be controlled by determining changes in the expression of selected target genes.

 

This is a fast and non-expensive methodology with high sensitivity. Next years will probably witness a wider use in microalge production systems.

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Konstantinos Gardikis

APIVITA

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"New microalgae based product development – from lab to market"

During the presentation Dr. Konstantinos Gardikis, Scientific Affairs Director of APIVITA presented the outline of the research activity of APIVITA on microalgae based product development, based on the AlgaeCom FP7 project.

 

The most significant results of the project were exhibited. These include a) development of microalgae extracts b) in vitro toxicity and bioactivity assays c) development of a RT-qPCR platform for the functional analysis of natural product extracts d) development of new products incorporating Nannochloropsis gaditana extract e) dissemination of the results and f) feasibility studies demonstrating the financial feasibility of the project.

 

Most importantly, due to the collaboration of the partners during AlgaeCom project, a new cosmetic series, APIVITA suncare, that will be based on Nannochloropsis gaditana extract will be on the market in 2017.

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Danai Georgiou

APIVITA

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"Microalgae in cosmetics"

There is an ongoing growing global demand for sustainable sourced ingredients with performance.

 

Microalgae ingredients are picking up steam in skin care, as they offer a range of benefits, are more advanced scientifically than before and can be eco-friendly at the same time.

 

The cosmetics industry is increasingly turning to the sea and oceans in the search for new ingredients seeking new sources of innovation. Microalgae have been recognized as source of valuable ingredients.

 

Many analysts believe that algae are key to sustainable supply of ingredients in the future. Now more than ever, algae are a hot topic. The driving force is, and will continue to be, the increasingly knowledgeable consumer.

 

Manufacturers are competing for an ever-growing population of buyers who are becoming better informed and conscious about the ingredients that are going into and onto their bodies. Possibly the use of algae extracts might look like the best bet for cosmetics given their abundance, sustainable harvesting and thanks to their multiple beauty benefits.

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Deborah M Power

Comparative Endocrinology and Integrative Biology Group, Centro de Ciências do Mar, Universidade do Algarve, Faro, Portugal

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"Modulating Barrier Function and Innate Immunity in Fish"

There is an ongoing growing global demand for sustainable sourced ingredients with performance.

 

Microalgae ingredients are picking up steam in skin care, as they offer a range of benefits, are more advanced scientifically than before and can be eco-friendly at the same time.

 

The cosmetics industry is increasingly turning to the sea and oceans in the search for new ingredients seeking new sources of innovation. Microalgae have been recognized as source of valuable ingredients.

 

Many analysts believe that algae are key to sustainable supply of ingredients in the future. Now more than ever, algae are a hot topic. The driving force is, and will continue to be, the increasingly knowledgeable consumer.

 

Manufacturers are competing for an ever-growing population of buyers who are becoming better informed and conscious about the ingredients that are going into and onto their bodies. Possibly the use of algae extracts might look like the best bet for cosmetics given their abundance, sustainable harvesting and thanks to their multiple beauty benefits.

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Manuel Manchado

IFAPA Centro El Toruño. Junta de Andalucía. Spain

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"AQUAGENET, a network for biotech in aquaculture. The case of sole"

Aquagenet was a collaborative biotech network that applied the last NGS technologies to some fish, mollusc and pathogen species to generate an important volume of genomic resources suitable to be used in aquaculture.

 

The main results and databases generated in this project were explained. In the case of sole (Solea senegalensis), the main genomic tools and databases were shown and the application of these tools to a case study related with ion regulation in young larvae was explained.

 

The RNA-seq, microarray and openarray data were coincident to demonstrate a fail in membrane stability of these larvae that produce edemas that, in turn, induce a pancreatitis-like syndrome with autolysis, inflammation, antioxidative defensive response and apoptosis.

 

Also, the sole genome data were presented as well as the identification of sex-chromosomes markers using Rad-seq technology.

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J. Firmino

University of Algarve

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"Epigenetic regulation in sole. The role of methyltransferases"

Epigenetics is a major factor that modulates genome dynamix. Methylation is one of the main mechanisms involved in epigenetic regulation that it is mediated my methyltransferases.

 

In this talk, four genes encoding methyltransferases were described in sole. In situ hybridization profiles during development showed gene-specific expression patterns.

 

Moreover, treatments with the DAZA drug, a dnmt-inhibitor, demonstrated that these genes are also regulated by methylation. Finally, thermal-imprinting treatments applied in embryos and larvae demonstrated a differential regulation of methyltransferases particularly relevant for the dnmt3aa or the muscle-specific isoform.

 

Performance trials demonstrated the these genes in gene expression were associated to different growth in juveniles converting in an useful marker for imprinting studies as it is the case of Algae4A-B project.

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